Saint Mary's School News

Seminar Program prepares Saint Mary’s students for life in the 21st century

Saint Mary’s signature Seminar Program is designed to deliver the “preparation for life” part of the school’s mission of preparing girls for college and life.

With a focus on helping girls develop key competencies, the Seminar Program engages students in relevant, experiential learning experiences with experts, resources, and organizations in the greater Raleigh area. The program is comprised of four tracks, which change quarterly by grade-level. The tracks include innovation, communication, social impact, and health and wellness. Within these tracks, grade-level content also incorporates themes of leadership education, public speaking, college counseling, and financial literacy.

Grade-level programming

  • During the first quarter of the school year, 9th graders participate in a health and wellness track. The students will work with the Chrysalis Network in learning about healthy relationships as well as the Saint Mary’s dance faculty and health and wellness team to study issues of personal health and well-being, self-care, and self-awareness. Students will create a public awareness campaign to highlight a health and wellness topic explored during the this seminar track.
  • The first quarter 10th grade track engages students in work with the staff from Teaching Horse, a leadership development company whose approach to leadership development is inspired by how horses lead their herds. Teaching Horse uses the diamond model of leadership to encourage students to look at themselves as leaders and help to build leadership skills. The 10th graders will also develop communications and reasoning skills as they explore the positives and negatives of digital media. Finally, they will each select a topic and prepare to defend both the pro and con sides of the argument as they learn the basics of public speaking and debate, a timely topic in the fall of 2020.
  • Eleventh graders learn about the importance of communicating with colleges and future employers during their first track in communication. They create resumes, build a profile on LinkedIn, participate in mock interviews, and work directly with Saint Mary's college counselors. They are also engaged in SAT and ACT prep and will take the PSAT on October 14.
  • Senior Seminar supports 12th graders in their transition from high school to college and life beyond Saint Mary’s gates with a first semester of intensive college counseling and application preparation, and a second semester during which they apply what they have learned and the skills they have developed to an individually-designed internship or capstone project.

The Seminar Program is one way Saint Mary's fulfills its longstanding mission to prepare girls for college and life. By integrating what it knows girls need with what it knows of the changing 21st-century world, Saint Mary's offers students relevant, forward-looking, real-world opportunities and creates a transformational educational experience designed expressly for girls.